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MLK's niece asks Trump for 'tidal wave' of clemency, gives list of nearly 100 names
Alveda King, Martin Luther King Jr.'s niece, said Thursday she gave the White House almost 100 names of prisoners she wants released, in an effort to make a "good tidal wave" of clemency.
"I did not, on purpose count or remember the names, I just submitted the list," King told the Washington Examiner. "I'm trying to get a good tidal wave, a positive tidal wave, a tidal wave to maybe change things and make things better."
King did not provide the Examiner with a copy of the list, which she delivered to the office of Trump's son-in-law and presidential adviser Jared Kushner at the start of August. She said the clemency decisions could be sensitive and declined to flesh out her specific interactions with the Trump administration.
An Evangelical Christian and founder of the anti-abortion group Civil Rights for the Unborn, King has been a strong supporter of President Trump. In July, she defended the president from Rep. John Lewis' (R-Ga.) claims that Trump does not care about civil rights.
Trump has used his clemency powers nine times. He released four inmates and issued the post-release pardons of five other people. He has done so almost always after a celebrity or political ally has asked him to do so.
Still, King said she is hopeful for a massive "jubilee" of clemency and that it's her understanding that the White House is processing the matter effectively.
She said the Trump administration put a clemency recommendation review process in place after the president released Alice Johnson, who was convicted on drug conspiracy charges, in June at the behest of reality TV star Kim Kardashian.
"It's not disorder, it's a very orderly process. ... I'm a person who believes in order, and I believe they have a good system in place," King said.
"I didn't try to go in and put a list in the president's hands. ... You can get it to Jared Kushner's office, and they will look at it."
King's goddaughter and a former prison inmate, Angela Stanton, was the main hand in assembling the clemency list. She told the Examiner that she prioritized people who had already served beyond 10 years.
"The majority of these people decided to go to trial, and if they had not gone to trial, they would have been home," Stanton said.
"Everybody deserves to get out and everybody deserves a second chance," she said.